Categories: Tech

Australia finally gets our first electric ute. The LDV eT60 is a hard sell with 330km range for $92,990

Today marks a major milestone in Australia, the first electric ute is finally here and it’s not a Cybertruck, it’s not an F150 Lightning, or a Rivian R1T, it’s from a brand that many Aussies won’t be familiar with, LDV. This brand is one that targets commercial vehicles while that’s normally a boring segment of the vehicle market, today, that’s incredibly exciting.

The eT60 is the electric version of LDV’s T60MAX ute. The dual cab ute offers a very familiar design, which is great in its ability to appeal to everyday ute buyers. The ute offers a regular 5 seats so you and a few tradie mates can grab your Big Ms and hit the building site.

The rear-wheel drive ute offers 1,000kg of payload in the back, along with a braked towing capacity of 1,000kg. The vehicle tips the scales at 2,300kg, so it’s certainly not light, but does feature 187mm of ground clearance, along with a 27-degree approach and 24-degree departure angle, so this is actually an off-road capable vehicle.

Now for the important bits..

The LDV eT60 uses a permanent magnet synchronous motor which puts out 130kW of power and 310Nm of torque, with a maximum speed of 120km/hr. The ute uses an 88.55kW lithium-ion battery pack for a maximum range of 330km on the WLTP scale.

On the rear quarter panel, you’ll find a charging door that houses a CCS2 connector, which supports up to DC fast charging at up to 80kW charging speeds and is estimated to take around 45 minutes to get you between 20-80% state of charge in that time. If you charge using AC, you’ll get 11kW and definitely be up for an overnight recharge, taking as much as 13 hours to go from 5% to 100% on single-phase power. This shrinks to 9 hours if you have access to 3-phase power.

The efficiency of the LDV eT60 is a massive 268.5Wh/km, for comparison, our Model Y often has an average energy usage as low as 140Wh/km.

The ute offers a decent set of standard features including ABS, Stability control, traction control, rain-sensing wipers, reversing camera, ISOfix child seat anchors, 6-way electric adjusted seats, a 10.25″ infotainment display, Apple CarPlay support. LDV offers a 5-year 160,000km warranty with the vehicle and the battery is warrantied for 8 years or 160,000kms. Servicing costs are unknown, but the schedule is every 2 years or 30,000kms.

I am excited to see Australia’s first electric ute, but nothing can prepare you for the price, the LDV eTV60 costs A$92,990. At that price, it’s really hard to justify this vehicle. We’re used to seeing EVs be priced at a premium over their ICE equivalents, but a comparable ute, the Ford Ranger, starts at $35,930 before on-roads.

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With a price tag this high, the car is not eligible for almost any of the state-based incentives to buy EVs.

The performance, range and payload and towing figures are not likely to win many people over, so you’d really need to be making a conscious decision to be emissions-free to consider this purchase.

LDV like many companies that get into EVs has decided to take an existing platform and electrify it, rather than a ground-up rebuild. The front end for example is aggressive but lacks any optimisation to flow the air over the car more efficiently and increase range. If the best case is 330kms, the day-to-day real range is likely to be somewhere around 250kms and that will be fine for some, but completely unpractical for others, particularly if it further reduces towing workloads.

The takeaway is really this, it’s fantastic to see an electric ute finally coming to Australia, but the spec sheet makes it really challenging to imagine it’ll be adopted at any scale. This leaves plenty of room for other manufacturers to undercut it and outperform it.

It looks like LDV know the eT60 is a hard sell to everyday consumers, as this will be aimed at large corporate entities, all three levels of Government and fleet businesses who’ve committed to emission reduction targets, and private early adopters.

We’re delighted the LDV eT60 is Australia’s first electric ute, and now is the time to build on our first mover advantage.

We’re an OEM offering Australia’s first electric ute and everything that comes with that fact: a nationwide dealer network, factory-backed servicing and warranty, and a significant spare parts operation to manage our fast-growing carpark. And now we have Australia’s first electric ute – and this is why we’ve secured fleet agreements with major global and Australian companies, Federal, State and Local governments and fleet operators who are committed to running their businesses in a more environmentally-sound manner.

Dinesh Chinnappa, LDV General Manager.

More information at https://www.ldvautomotive.com.au/vehicles/ldv-et60/

Jacky

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